Smoothie recipes are popular on BBC Good Food and for good reason – making your own at home saves money on buying expensive ready-mixed bottles. It’s also a quick-fix way to taking in fruit and veg nutrients. Smoothies have been around since the early decades of the last century, when electric blenders were developed in the United States. Combining fruit, veg and sometimes ice with juice or water, these tasty drinks are a great way to top up on health-enriching nutrients.
Some people further serve their lifestyle by adding nutritional supplements or alcohol into the mix.
Smoothie-makers, the blending machines used to make smoothies, have diversified in recent decades. From simplistic, bullet-style smoothie-makers designed to efficiently blitz small batches of smoothie, to more traditional smoothie-makers with blender-style jugs, there’s an appliance out there to suit every household.
Some smoothie-makers have added features itended to help users make smoothies more to their liking. We’ll encounter some of these extras in our smoothie-maker reviews, from deoxygenising pumps that make the taste and colour of smoothies more vibrant, to a smoothie-maker that cleverly integrates the separate function of juicing with smoothie-making.
Just how powerful a smoothie-maker needs to be depends on the personal taste of the user.
Those who like their smoothies really smooth are more likely to require an expensive machine with a powerful motor, while those who don’t mind taking a bit of rough with the smoothie may be just as well served with a budget offering.
Which smoothie-maker should I buy?
When researching which smoothie-maker to buy, bear in mind the frequency with which you’ll make smoothies. If it’ll be a daily thing, choose a machine that can be left out on your surface.
Fruit pulp can be a killer to wash-up, so if you have a dishwasher it’s worth buying a blender with cups that are suitable.
We tested 15 machines of varying prices and actually found that mid-range machines don't always offer much in the way of value for money – cheap and cheerful machines are good for occasional smoothie-makers and people who might want to upgrade one day.
Fervent fans would be wise to consider investing in something over £100 that comes with a warranty, as regular use does put the blades and motor through considerable strain, especially if using things like beetroot or veg with hard stalks.
Read on to discover our top buys. For over 400 buyer’s guides, visit our product reviews section and find guides to everything from juicers to kombucha, plus to get the best results from your machine, see our best smoothie recipes.
The best smoothie blenders to buy in 2021
- Bosch VitaMaxx vacuum blender (£426) Read review
- IKOHS OSIT Mix & Go Multisport personal blender (£33.95) Read review
- PROMiXX MiiXR X7 performance nutrition blender (£99.99) Read review
- Nutri Ninja personal blender (£69.99) Read review
- Breville Blend Active blender (£15) Read review
- IKOHS MOI SLIM personal blender (£29.63) Read review
- Salter Nutripro blender (£99.99) Read review
- Sage The 3X Bluicer Pro (£369) Read review
- VonShef UltraBlend smoothie-maker (£53.99) Read review
- Tower table blender (£29.99) Read review
Bosch VitaMaxx vacuum blender
Best smoothie-maker for finished results
This is one of the best smoothie-makers on the market, with excellent blending power and high-quality components. It has a deoxygenisation function – a vacuum which removes oxygen to give the most vibrant finished smoothie – plus a range of useful accessories like storage bowls. We found it blended even pesky small ingredients like raspberry seeds, a rarity in the smoothie blender world. You will need a decent amount of space to store it though, plus it's not cheap. Read our full review of the Bosch VitaMaxx blender.
IKOHS OSIT Mix & Go Multisport personal blender
- Available from: IKOHS (£33.95)
Best cheap smoothie-maker
If you're after a smoothie-maker with few bells and whistles that does the job well for a good price, this slimline appliance from IKOHS ticks all the right boxes. It's operated using a large button on the front and there is very little else to familiarise yourself with. Thanks to the tall stacking design, it's particularly easy to pack away, helped by the fact the power cable can be tucked into the base. Read our full review of the IKOHS OSIT personal blender.
PROMiXX MiiXR X7 performance nutrition blender
Best smoothie-maker for healthy eaters
This intuitive blender is easy to set up and navigate, so you'd be hard-pressed to make a mistake while using it. Health fans will welcome the addition of a supplement mixing feature for making things like protein shakes. The resulting smoothie was blended evenly, with no stubborn stringy bits or lumps. Our only gripe is its capacity – at only 650ml, it sits awkwardly between the ideal size to make smoothies for one or two people. Read our full review of the PROMiXX performance nutrition blender.
Nutri Ninja personal blender
Best smoothie-maker for features
This powerful machine by Ninja has the capacity to blend powerfully and consistently. It comes with various blend functions, including a FreshVac oxygen pump accessory which helps make smoothies vibrant in colour and taste, giving it a very clear USP. The set-up is complicated so you'll need to follow the instructions closely. It's also a loud blender, despite the brand name. Read our full review of the Nutri Ninja personal blender.
Breville Blend Active blender
Best smoothie-maker for families
This affordable smoothie-maker is one of the most approachable and user-friendly we've come across. We particularly liked the fact the motor was operated by a button rather than automatically starting when the cup is locked in place. The four cup accessories are useful and good-quality, although you will need the space to store them. Read our full review of the Breville Blend Active blender.
IKOHS MOI SLIM personal blender
Best smoothie-maker for small kitchens
For simplicity and style, this IKOHS really impressed. It has a tiny footprint (10cm) making it ideal for smaller worktops. It couldn't be easier to use thanks to its pleasingly minimalist design, plus it's an affordable buy. It's worth noting that the cup capacity is limited – at 400ml this may even be too small for people who like to drink large smoothies. Read our full review of the IKOHS MOI SLIM blender.
Salter Nutripro blender
Best smoothie-maker for blending power
A powerhouse of an appliance with lots of practical elements, the Nutripro whizzed up some of the best smoothie results on test. The silky finish is achieved thanks to the 1200W motor, which is as powerful as it sounds (although it does make a fair bit of noise as a result). We particularly rate the robust storage cups and the smooth body of the machine which is easy to wipe clean. You'll need plenty of space to store it all, though. Read our full review of the Salter Nutripro blender.
Sage 3X Bluicer Pro
Best dual-purpose smoothie-maker
Build quality and finished results aside, the genius thing about the Bluicer is that is makes both juices and smoothies (and is in fact included in our review of the best juicers). This dual functionality means the resulting smoothies can have a juiced element, making them extra vibrant and flavoursome. It's a handsome machine, which is fortunate as it's large so will probably work best being left out on a countertop. Read our full review of Sage The Bluicer Pro.
VonShef UltraBlend smoothie-maker
Best value smoothie-maker
VonShef often impress with their affordable appliances and kitchen gadgets – their smoothie-maker is no different. It also happens to look very smart around the kitchen. The functionality is straightforward, intuitive and powerful, producing impressive results, even working through tougher ingredients like fibrous ginger. Another characteristic that's appealing is how easy it is to clean. Read our full review of the VonShef UltraBlend smoothie-maker.
Tower table blender
Best basic smoothie-maker
This cheap smoothie-maker gives good results but its power and build matches its low price point. That said, it's a very easy machine to use, plus it has a cooling-liquid-lined cup designed to help make better frozen smoothies, which makes refreshingly cold drinks. It's also a neat, diminutive blender that stores well. Read our full review of the Tower table blender.
How we tested smoothie-makers
We reviewed a representative sample of smoothie-makers and scored them against the following criteria.
The Good Food lump test: we put several tough ingredients (half an apple, a banana, 20g ginger, 25g kale, 3 ice cubes, a tablespoon of oats and 2 pieces of frozen fruit, plus 400ml of water) in each blender for 1 minute. We then attempted to suck the smoothie through a straw. Anything that got stuck was marked down – the optimum result was a silky smooth mix with ease of flow.
Ease of use: lots of people will move bullet blenders in and out of cupboards – we wanted machines that were intuitive and easy to set up.
Noise: we love smoothies in the morning, but our neighbours don’t tend to like being woken up by industrial-grade mechanical noise. While all smoothie bullets make some noise, machines that spluttered, made notably loud sounds or noises similar to a clapped out car were judged unfavourably.
Extra features: machines with different cup options, additional blades and smart blending functions were marked up.
Cup quality: say no to leaky cups! We gave carry cups a vigorous shake to ensure no liquid would escape and ruin the inside of your bag.
Packaging: we marked down products that came in excessive non-recyclable packaging.
Instruction manual: a good manual can really amplify your experience of smoothie-making since they often include smoothie recipes and tips.
Ease of storage: if you have minimal counter space, a smoothie-maker that can be easily packed away is an essential.
Extra features: we tested all additional features on products, including juicing functions.
Ease of cleaning: smoothies are traditionally tricky to clean up. We tested how well cups and jugs washed and considered whether they were dishwasher-friendly.
Kitchen footprint and overall aesthetic: some of us choose to have juicers and blenders on display – we looked for appliances that don't take up too much counter space and that we'd be proud to have out in our kitchens.
Smoothie recipes and tips
This review was last updated in June 2020. If you have any questions, suggestions for future reviews or spot anything that has changed in price or availability please get in touch at email@example.com.